The Ministry of Antiquities announced on Sunday that an Egyptian mission unearthed a major discovery of an ancient cemetery in Tuna Al-Gabal near Minya governorate.
The cemetery contains a large number of burial shafts that are believed to date back to the late pharaonic period and early Ptolemaic era. The cemetery is six kilometres away from north Tuna Al-Gabal archaeological site.
Mostafa Waziri, head of the mission and secretary general of the Supreme Council of Antiquities, said in a press release, “the mission started excavation by the end of 2017 to search for the uncovered section of the cemetery of the 15th nome of Upper Egypt in ancient time.”
The discoveries included mummies, tombs, and belongings of priests worshiping the ancient Egyptian god Thoth. Thirteen burials were found inside the cemetery in which a thousand well-preserved figurines were found, while many others were discovered in a bad condition and restorers are still collecting their parts.
One of the discovered tombs belongs to a priest called “Hersa-Essei” who was also dubbed “the pioneer of the five”, referring to his high position.
The tombs also included alabaster jars decorated with the names of their owners with the inner parts of a priest found inside them. The mummy of the priest, who was named “Djehuty-Irdy-Es” was unearthed.
The mission also unearthed 40 limestone sarcophagi of different shapes and sizes and a family tomb that contains several burials of the members with figurines bearing the names of their owners.
Excavation work is scheduled to last for five years in an attempt to uncover all the burials of the cemetery, the statement added.